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BIGGER PICTURE ▶▶▶


Enriched cages under more pressure


Leading global food companies are calling on the European Commission and European MEPs to phase out the use of cages in animal farming, beginning with enriched cages for laying hens. Firms – including Nestlé, Mondelez International, Unilever and Aldi Nord – all signed a letter which emphasises that the business case for phasing out enriched cages is strong, par- ticularly across the EU, noting that “cage-free systems are widespread, economically viable and provide better living conditions for hens”. The signatories stressed that the revision of the EU’s animal welfare legislation which is currently in preparation, provides an ideal opportuni- ty to end the use of cages in animal farming throughout the EU. Figures from the European Commission suggest that just under half of all eggs in the EU are from enriched cage sys- tems, while 32.5% come from barn systems, 11.8% are from free range units and 6.2% are farmed organically.


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PHOTO: KOOS GROENEWOLD


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